Nick Dalton | October 20th, 2012
Pascal Development chairman Shahwan Saffwan, whose company has secured $270 million for the Central Park shopping centre, commercial and residential development in the city’s central business district, said there was a need for "a really nice six-star hotel" in Cairns.
He said it would be the "last phase" of the Central Park project which includes a first stage of an $85 million shopping centre and a second $165 million stage of commercial and residential, including 400 apartments.
Mr Saffwan said he would like to build a Gold Coast Palazzo Versace-style hotel in the same area but it would have to be financed from the sales of the commercial and residential components of the development.
"A lot of multi-millionaires come here. It is a nice place," he said. "They have a lot of disposable income from Asia, China, Indonesia, Malaysia and even India. They have money to spend.
"It is still in the very early stages of a plan."
Amenities that separate a six-star from a five-star hotel include private in-room chefs and butlers, on-call chauffeurs and private pools with rooms averaging $1000 per night.
Mr Saffwan said it could be a Palazzo Versace, "something nice, different to other hotels, unique".
He said there were no plans yet nor an estimate of cost.
"It would be a sizeable investment," Mr Saffwan said.
Central Park Group director Rose-Marie Dash said the hotel would not fit on the Spence St site and would have to be built on the waterfront.
She said the proposal was "very early days" and at least five or six years away.
Mrs Dash said ideally it would be built on one of the Ports North development sites between the Cairns Hilton and the Cairns Cruise Liner Terminal as close as possible to the Pullman Reef Hotel Casino.
The hotel could possibly cost $150 million to build and not necessarily be a Versace, she said.
"Potentially it is possible. Mr Saffwan is very excited about the region," Mrs Dash said.
Pascal has committed $70 million towards the first stage of Central Park and has set aside $200 million for the second stage. It has taken a 60 per cent stake in the project involving a consortium of HS Vision, Gasparin Group and Vukobratich Enterprises holding 40 per cent.
Mr Saffwan said since 1993 his company had built hotels, shopping centres and schools in Malaysia and this was their first international investment. He said the company had been involved in more than $1 billion ringgit ($316 million) of developments.
Cairns Post Pty Ltd Copyright © 2008